Terrific to see such enthusiasm and commitment

June 16, 2008 at 4:44 pm 3 comments

Young people coming back from Universities like Stanford, Columbia, Caltech, McGill, MIT, Cornell, Duke, etc. and setting up IT companies in Pakistan is becoming quite the norm. Techlogix, Sofizar, Alchemy, VahZay, Amaana, Si3, Lootmaar, Trivor, PixSense, Folio3 and Ikonami are to mention a few. This is not to belittle our own home-grown talent who are daily coming out with innovative young start-ups that are proving to the world that innovation is alive and well in Pakistan.

These bright young people are full of enthusiasm and are developing in their companies a professional ethic and process that is second to none.

I met one such CEO on my recent visit to Lahore – Hasnain Sheikh of Inov8 whom I had met briefly at the Mobile Commerce Conference in Karachi a couple of months ago. A graduate of Wharton Business School, Hasnain exudes a confidence that is infectious. He talked about the Mobile Banking space and how much his young company has achieved within a short space of time.

Inov8 is different from Amaana in that they are not focusing on branchless banking or providing an option to those who are outside the banking system. They are instead working with banks and providing value added services for the existing customers of these banks. They are also working with telcos, insurance companies and utility firms to offer CRM services, content delivery services and transaction processing services via the mobile phone. Although they are already operational, the official launch is likely to take place in about a month’s time.

Walking through their offices and listening to the vision that Hasnain and Bashir have for the company, and seeing what the young team of 60 that they already have in place are alreaady delivering from their spiffy offices in Mall Road, once again showed me that a lot more was happening in the IT space in this country that a lot of people give us credit for, and that there was every reason to be optimistic about the future of technology growth in Pakistan.

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iPhone Evangelism becoming quite the norm Just call me Dr. Jehan

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Anonymous  |  June 23, 2008 at 10:38 pm

    Hasnain/Bashir, Jehan,

    Can you identify what these 60 individuals are doing? With my prior experience of running engineering departments and having seen your application in working, I don’t see why more than 5 people are needed each in mobile and web departments. Add QA and networks, and the total shouldn’t exceed 20.

    Also, with such expense on office and staff, how do you plan to make money? With banks having already burned millions in deploying i-banking which sees few 100 transactions per day, and hence poor ROI, how will you justify the costs to banks? Or is the plan to charge the users? How much? When will we know?

    Finally, what is your relationship with RIM? Any one developing Symbian software can’t claim Nokia as their partner. Same goes for RIM/BlackBerry. What will you do if they file a lawsuit?

    Thank you

    Reply
  • 2. anonymous  |  July 21, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    Bravo! Inov8 is doing wonderful things for Pakistanis and the Pakistani economy. You are creating breakthrough technology and it’s fascinating.

    Reply
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